Everybody wants to save the most money on shipping. With so many different shipping methods and carriers to choose from, however, it isn’t easy to know the best option, which can change based on the situation.
The type of shipping option that’s best for you also depends on various factors such as delivery time, distance, and product weight. Here are some basic recommendations to help you find the best shipping method and make sure you save money on shipping:
The Cheapest Ways to Ship Based on Your Product Weight
To find the most cost-effective shipping method, your product’s weight is the first thing to consider. Here are our recommendations to get the best rates on your items based on how heavy they are:
Items That Are Under 1 Pound
If you’re shipping light items below 1 pounds, the best carrier to go with is USPS. USPS First Class Mail is a fast, low-cost way to send any lightweight package.
Items That Are Under 10 Pounds
For products that only weigh between 1-10 pounds, we recommend that you go with USPS Priority Mail.
Heavier Items That Go Beyond 10 Pounds
There are various options available if you plan to ship heavy items. The best ones include:
- UPS Ground: An excellent solution for merchants that want to ship items up to 150 pounds. Each package gets sent within three to five business days.
- FedEx Ground: This option is available for stores that ship items up to 70 pounds. Like with UPS Ground, you can expect packages to ship within three to five business days.
- USPS Parcel Select: If you’re shipping items up to 70 pounds, another solution is to go with USPS Parcel Select. It also comes with order tracking at no extra cost.
Unicorn Shipping: Priority Mail Cubic
If you’re shipping any items up to 20 pounds, one of the best kept secrets in shipping is Priority Mail Cubic. Cost is determined by size, not weight, so this service is great for smaller but still relatively heavy items. Not using Priority Mail Cubic is #3 on the list of Deadly Sins when it comes to shipping.
The Cheapest Ways to Ship Based on Delivery Time
Delivery has a vital role in what kind of shipping option and carrier is best for your business. Here’s how you can get the best shipping rates depending on how fast customer needs their order to arrive:
Next-Day Delivery Service
Here are our recommendations of shipping carriers to get your items delivered the next day:
- USPS Express: The cheapest option you can get for next-day delivery, though not always the most reliable.
- UPS Next Day Air Saver: Not only does this option offer competitive rates, but UPS will also refund you if the item doesn’t get shipped the next day. You will need to file a claim, however, if that is the case.
- FedEx Standard Overnight: FedEx offers same-day delivery for all addresses in the US. However, if you’re shipping items that are more than 150 pounds, you should get FedEx next-day freight services instead.
A note on guaranteed delivery: when a carrier says that the delivery time is guaranteed, that just means you can get a refund if they don’t make it. Guaranteed delivery does not mean the package arrives as expected every time.
If You’re Looking to Ship Within 2 Days
For two-day delivery, our best recommendations are FedEX 2 Day and UPS 2nd Day.
If You’re Looking to Ship Within 2-3 Days
To send orders within 2-3 days, the best option to go with is USPS Priority Mail. It offers the lowest rates compared to UPS and FedEx, which can cost almost twice as much.
You can see on their website that USPS Priority Mail coverage is 2 days for most of the country. If you don’t need guaranteed 2 Day delivery, then this option is the most economical option for that service.
The Cheapest way to Ship Internationally
Having international customers is a great way to expand your reach, but delivering products can seem more complicated. The cheapest way to ship your items internationally is through USPS, which will be less expensive than UPS and FedEx (that can cost three times as much).
Other Tactics You Can Use to Save Money on Shipping
Outside of these shipping methods, there are also things you can do from your side to save money on shipping. Here are a couple of tactics to employ:
Provide the Right Protection for Your Items
You want to make sure that each of your items gets to the customer safely from A to Z. If your product gets broken or stolen during the delivery process, that’s money you’ll lose shipping.
There are two main ways to do this. First of all, you want to make sure that you’re using the right packaging material to protect your items during transportation.
Secondly, you should consider having insurance in case anything unexpected happens to your item during delivery.
Integrate a Shipping App
A great way to save on shipping is to integrate shipping software to your store. A quality app should have access to discounts on shipping with major carriers to make sure you get the best rates on shipping every time.
The best part about using shipping software is that you can set up automation so the software finds the best rates for each and every shipment, so you don’t have to worry about figuring it out every time.
Keep Your Packaging as Light as Possible
The heavier your package is, the more expensive shipping is going to be. To save money try to avoid using heavy packaging material to ship items. For example, instead of cardboard, consider using light materials such as air pillows or packaging peanuts.
Reuse Packaging Material
Lastly, a great way you can save on shipping costs is to recycle your old material for future orders. It’s a great way to save money and respect the environment at the same time.
Grow Your Business With The Best Shipping Rates
Shipping can easily feel like a liability, but there are ways to not only minimize its effects, but deliver great customer experience at the same time. It’s why you need to weigh all of your options and select the shipping option that will save you the most money.
By following our recommendations, you should have a good idea of how to get rates for shipping. To learn more about how Essential Hub can help you save money with the best discounts on shipping, contact us today.